We are an Amish farm family in rural Wisconsin. We live on an organic farm with our four children. It is the home farm, so it has two houses and my parents also live here. We have a state-inspected facility on the farm where we wash, grade and package the eggs. My egg business started in 2004 in an old wooden granary with a small flock of chickens. My hobby grew into a business that helps sustain other family farms today. I see to it that these farmers use my feed recipes and give the hens access to the outdoors and pasture, weather and seasons permitting. The eggs are all gathered by hand and mostly handled by hand.
I used to have mixed flocks of chickens, so I had white and brown eggs mixed in the same carton, but we learned over the years that too often they tend not to get along the best. One breed is bound to be more timid therefore gets “the backseat.” We now went to all brown egg layers, partly because many people have the mind-set that white eggs aren’t as good, but I still firmly believe that white eggs can be just as nutritious and tasty if the hens are all in the same house and get fed the same. In the future you might see green eggs mixed in, which are from a South American breed of chicken.
Our hens are all fed the same, an Omega 3 diet, which includes flax seed. The color of the shell has nothing to do with the quality inside. The quality, size, inside color and taste of the egg will vary with the seasons, the weather, the personality and age of the chickens. Chickens are just like people: each one is unique. Most hens like it outdoors, while some enjoy the shelter of their house. Some are lazy, some full of energy. Some are shy while others are bold and bossy. I see a definite pecking order. For the hen that bosses herself around and consumes more feed (choice morsels, etc.), she will tend to lay an egg with a richer yolk. A more timid hen may produce a paler yolk. Older hens tend to produce a paler yolk as well. These are a few reasons you may notice variations. There are many factors that influence the richness of an egg yolk. Even in winter, fresh air and sunshine help produce richer eggs. In spring you should see richer yolks. In summer you may see paler yolks due to heat stress. In fall, you should see them richer again. I rotate them between different pens to keep them on fresh grass.
To find out which stores near you carry our eggs, please give us a call. We are glad to answer any questions you may have. Our phone number is also on all the egg cartons.
I always had dreams of expanding my business to organic meat birds, chicken soup, turkeys and beef, but the egg business has grown so much due to customer demand. It keeps us busy enough it seems. It might still be possible in the future, but if it is, the first and most likely one will be canned chicken soup and/or broth, which would come from our older hens.
By the way folks, we sell a lot of eggs right off the farm where we also sell other organic foods in our mini retail store. Whether you are within driving distance or come close occasionally, you’re sure welcome to stop in! We are now open Monday through Saturday from 7:00am – 7:00pm.
Your satisfaction is important to us! We gladly accept any feedback you may have. It may help us serve our hens and customers better! Thank you for buying local and organic products!
Sincerely, Milo and Edna Ellen Bontrager